Contribution of Justice Muḥammad Karam Shah al-Azhari in the Codification of Qiṣaṣ and Diyat Laws in Pakistan: Analytical and Methodological Study
Keywords:Qiṣāṣ, Diyat, Codification, Islamization, Judicial Interpretation, ratio decidendi, obiter dictum, stare decisis, precedent.
This research analysis the modus operandi employed in a judgment authored by Justice Muhammad Karam Shah Al-Azhari, cited as Federation of Pakistan v. Gul Hassan Khan, PLD 1989 SC 633, which laid the foundation for principles of judicial interpretation concerning cases pertinent to Qiṣāṣ and Dīyat, by fostering their integration within the Islamic ethos of Pakistan. The research furnishes a concise encapsulation of his life, accentuating his scholastic endeavors, which wielded substantial influence on his cerebral perspective and juridical exegeses. The research further predominantly explores the ratio decidendi and the obiter dictum articulated in the case, to extract the approach espoused by the Shariat Appellate Bench of Supreme Court of Pakistan, laying emphasis on the jurisprudential and juridical insight of Justice Karam Shah. The methodological investigation extracts his juridical strategies through his technique of exegeting Quranic passages, extrapolating legal decisions from Prophetic Hadiths, Companions decisions, opinions of leading jurists of Islamic law and Jurisprudence, and contemporary jurisprudential analogies. The research further illuminates adept command of Justice Karam Shah over the Arabic vernacular, which contributed significantly in decoding complex legal terminology, and rendering translations of Quranic scripture, Hadith, and fiqh compendiums. The research aims to assess the impacts of the judicial verdict on codification of provisions of Qiṣāṣ and Dīyat in Pakistan comparting it with best practices of other Muslim jurisdictions. The research concludes with propositions to bridge the lacunae that remained unexplored in the Case and subsequently bring the consequent amendments to consummate the evolution of the Islamization of laws governing crimes against bodily harm.